Protest Uses Empty Desks to Call for ‘Fair Funding’ for LAUSD Students

Parents, civil rights groups and education groups used hundreds of desks as part of a silent protest — later followed by a rowdier one involving students — outside of Los Angeles Unified School District downtown headquarters Tuesday.

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Hundreds of desks were seen outside LAUSD’s headquarters Tuesday morning. (Credit: KTLA)

The empty desks, which blocked Beaudry Avenue in the morning, were intended to represent students who organizers said were being failed by nation’s second-largest school district.

Organized by a group called Communities for Los Angeles Student Success, or CLASS, the protest was intended to demand fair funding for disadvantaged students in the school district.

CLASS was calling for district money — freed up by a new state funding formula that allows flexibility in educational spending — to be spent on underserved students rather than “pet projects,” according to a news release.

Later Tuesday, students gathered in front of LAUSD headquarters to call for a student position on the school board. They said neither teachers nor elected board members could adequately speak for pupils.

“Who can better represent us than us?” said student Airy Pulido. “Who better to represent students than students?”

KTLA’s Lynette Romero, Anthony Kurzweil and Melissa Pamer contributed to this report.

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Students protest outside LAUSD headquarters on April 8, 2014.